Jugs are yellow – cup is yellow

Yellow pitchers (Nuphar lutea); yellow water lily, yellow water lily; the Latatt family (Nymphaeaceae); calyx is yellow

 

In stagnant and slow-flowing waters, quiet backwaters, you can often come across an amazing plant with large green leaves and yellow flowers. It grows in shallow places and is always submerged in water.

These are yellow pitcher plants, an aquatic perennial. The rhizomes of the plant are creeping, horizontal, fleshy, with traces of dead leaves, yellowish-green on the outside, and white on the inside. Their length reaches 10 m, and the thickness is from 5 to 15 cm. The leaves are heart-shaped-oval, entire, leathery, with a sharp notch near the petiole. In addition to above-water leaves, pitcher plants also have underwater ones, they are delicate, with shorter petioles. The flowers are yellow, single, spherical. They bloom in June-July. The fruit is round-pear-shaped, in the form of a jug. This is where the name of the plant comes from. Yellow pitcher plants grow in ponds with stagnant or slow-flowing water. Widespread in the middle zone of Russia, Siberia, the Caucasus, Ukraine (all over the territory, except Crimea) and Central Asia.

For use in medicine, plant rhizomes are collected during flowering or in autumn. They get them out of the water with shovels, rakes or pitchforks. They are cleaned from the remains of leaves and roots, the rotten parts are removed, washed and cut into thin plates 3-5 mm thick, and then into smaller pieces, which are laid out in a thin layer on paper or burlap. Raw materials are first dried in the sun, then dried in the air under shelter, in the attic or in special dryers at a temperature not higher than 60 °C. The shelf life is no more than two years.

The rhizomes include alkaloids, tannins and resinous substances, starch (up to 20%), bitter substances, vitamin C and provitamin A (carotene). The seeds of the plant are extremely rich in starch (up to 44-45%) and tannins (about 4%).

In scientific medicine, the product lutenurin is prepared from the rhizomes, which has a bacteriostatic effect on gram-positive bacteria and a fungistatic effect on Candida fungi. Lutenurin is also active against protozoa — it acts on trichomonads (prescribed for trichomonad colpitis), has spermatocidal properties, thanks to which it is used as a contraceptive (contraceptive).

In folk medicine, a decoction of rhizomes is used to treat inflammatory processes of the digestive tract, rheumatism, fever, skin diseases, and hyperpolymenorrhea. It is believed that taking the decoction internally helps with impotence in men and frigidity in women. Douching with a decoction of rhizomes is prescribed by folk doctors for acute and chronic trichomonad colpitis complicated by bacterial and fungal flora, as well as as a contraceptive. An overdose of the rhizomes of pitchers when preparing decoctions is unacceptable!

Due to the high content of starch, the plant has long been of interest to people. But here’s the trouble — in raw form, all parts of the pitchers are quite poisonous. However, man has learned to remove toxic substances, after which the plant becomes suitable for consumption. To do this, remove the skin from the rhizomes and soak them several times, changing the water to wash out the alkaloids and tannins. Then the raw materials are dried. Dry rhizomes are ground and added to grain flour (up to 50%) or fried in oil, baked or boiled. Heat treatment contributes to the final removal of hazardous substances. Roasted and ground seeds of pitcher plants are used as a substitute for coffee.

Decoction of rhizomes. 4 tablespoons of dried and crushed rhizomes per 1 liter of boiling water. Boil for 5-7 minutes, cool, filter. Take 1 dessert spoon 3 times a day. Overdose is dangerous!

Decoction of rhizomes (external). 4 tablespoons of dried and crushed rhizomes per 1 liter of boiling water. Boil for 5-7 minutes, cool, filter. Used for douching.

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